RED JOAN

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Trevor Nunn Stars: Judi Dench, Sophie Cookson, Ben Miles, Stephen Campbell Moore, Tereza Srbova, Tom Hughes, Kevin Fuller, Ciaran Owens. We first meet octogenarian widow Joan Stanley (played by Judi Dench) when MI5 agents arrest her in her own home and charge her with treason. An elderly retired librarian she is the last person one would suspect of being a spy. As she is interrogated and tries to defend her choice, Joan’s story unfolds in a series of lengthy flashback sequences. In 1938 Joan (played by Sophie Cookson, from Continue reading

ALL IS TRUE

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Kenneth Branagh Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Lydia Wilson, Kathryn Wilder, Jack Colgrave Hirst, Phil Dunster. Shakespeare in retirement? In 1613 William Shakespeare (played here by Kenneth Branagh) was the most famous writer in England. But then his beloved Globe Theatre burned to the ground during a performance of his final play Henry VIII after a prop misfired. Shakespeare retired following that disaster and returned home to Stratford-upon-Avon. There he pottered around the house and tried his hand at Continue reading

TULIP FEVER

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Justin Chadwick Stars: Alicia Vikander, Christoph Waltz, Dane DeHaan, Holliday Grainger, Jack O'Connell, Judi Dench, Cara Delevingne, Tom Hollander, Kevin McKidd,  Matthew Morrison, Zach Galifianakis, Douglas Hodge, David Harewood. This melodramatic bodice ripper period romantic drama is set in Amsterdam in 1634. Tulips were very much prized and a source of great wealth in the market place. Playing out against this backdrop of a strong economic bubble and flourishing commodities market is a more formulaic story of romance, sex, Continue reading

MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Kenneth Branagh Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Michelle Pfeiffer, Johnny Depp, Willem Dafoe, Daisy Ridley, Josh Gad, Judi Dench, Olivia Colman, Penelope Cruz, Leslie Odom jr, Lucy Boynton, Sergei Polunin, Tom Bateman, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo. Strangers On A Train? Agatha Christie is the world's best-selling author, having sold some 2 billion copies of her crime and mystery novels. She has written 66 novels, 33 of which feature her famous creation, the arrogant, fastidious and brilliant Belgian sleuth Hercule Poirot. Many of her books Continue reading

MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN

Reviewed by GREG KING Director: Tim Burton Stars: Eva Green, Asa Butterfield, Ella Purcell, Samuel L Jackson, Chris O'Dowd, Judi Dench, Rupert Everett, Milo Parker, Terence Stamp, Kim Dickens, Allison Janney, Finlay MacMillan, Lauren McCrostie. Harry Potter meets X-Men on Groundhog Day? For years Jake Portman (Asa Butterfield, from Hugo, etc) has heard fantastic stories from his grandfather Abe (Terence Stamp) about the time he spent in a fantastic orphanage in the years before WWII. However, Jake's parents have done their best to dismiss his stories as fanciful Continue reading